14% more patients waiting on trolleys last month

The number of people on trolleys in hospitals across the country is on the rise.

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation figures for March are up 14% on February.

The total number of patients waiting on trolleys in March was 9,714, including 117 children. The average daily figure for the month was 486.

Last week had the highest figure of 2019 so far, with 617 patients waiting for beds on Tuesday, March 26, the highest number since March 2018.

University Hospital Limerick is the worst affected in the country, with 1,054 people waiting on a bed. It had its second-worst day for overcrowding last month, with 76 people on trolleys on March 19.

Today, 510 admitted patients are waiting for beds, according to today’s INMO Trolley Watch.

380 are waiting in the emergency department, while 130 are in wards elsewhere in the hospital.

The worst-hit hospitals today are:

  • University Hospital Limerick: 72
  • Cork University Hospital: 54
  • University Hospital Galway: 38
  • INMO General Secretary Phil Ni Sheaghdha said more staff need to be hired.

    "“Overcrowding remains endemic in Ireland's hospitals. Other countries are investing in their nurses and midwives - we need to do the same to recruit and retain more staff," she said.

    “And as Limerick continues to be the most overcrowded hospital in Ireland, management there are closing beds and shutting down an entire ward.

    If our health service doesn't see staffing and capacity increases, conditions will only worsen for patients and staff alike.

      The worst-affected hospitals last month were:

    • University Hospital Limerick: 1,054
    • Cork University Hospital: 870
    • University Hospital Galway – 722
    • South Tipperary General Hospital – 520
    • Sligo University Hospital - 483

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